Happy March, Toronto Centre!
I hope everyone is looking forward to the beginning of Spring. Remember to turn your clocks forward an hour tomorrow.
It has officially been over 100 days since I started my term as City Councillor for Ward 13. I am so proud to share the work happening in our community and update you on some of our accomplishments to date.
The 2023 budget has been adopted - as you know, this is the first budget proposed under the Strong Mayor powers imposed on us by the Provincial Government. The adopted budget is by no means perfect. I am disappointed with the service cuts to the TTC and the increase to single fares. We need to incentivize people to use the TTC again, not deter them by asking them to pay more to get less. However, I am happy that through collaboration, we were able to secure additional funding for the Rent Bank, The 519 Community Centre, youth anti-violence initiatives, and mental health workers in the TTC. Council has also made the CaféTO program permanent, and we successfully began the process to explore implementing a Commercial Parking Levy and other revenue tools so that we can avoid budget shortfalls in the future.
February was an eventful Black History Month. I enjoyed joining residents from across the ward to celebrate Black heritage and come together as a community. Unfortunately, it also came with challenges, including Metrolinx’s move to cut down the trees at Moss Park. Councillor Malik, Councillor Fletcher and I moved to create an Ontario Line Subcommittee at the Toronto East York Community Council to set explicit expectations for Metrolinx and request timelines for construction work. Our first meeting is on Wednesday, March 22 at 9:30am - please come out and make a deputation. I continue to invite Metrolinx to the table so we can build critical transit infrastructure responsibly and with community consultation.
On Valentine’s Day, I had the opportunity to join the community to share our love of the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood and to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the St. Lawrence Neighbourhood Association (SLNA). I had the pleasure of joining my colleague Councillor Malik and provincial counterparts, MPP Kristyn Wong-Tam and MPP Chris Glover, along with former Mayor David Crombie at the St. Lawrence Hall to congratulate the SLNA.
The SLNA has worked tirelessly to celebrate the rich history of the original ten blocks of the Town of York, advocate for excellent public spaces and streets, and to engage with its members and the local community. Their work continues to help shape a vibrant and successful downtown for decades to come, and I am honoured to represent them at City Council.
As spring approaches, my office is happy to announce that we will soon be opening a constituency office! This will be the first time in the history of Toronto Centre that the Councillor's office will have a constituency office. We are having our grand opening on Saturday, April 29th beginning at 1:00PM. Please come and join us to celebrate this milestone!
If you found this e-newsletter informative, please share it with your neighbours and encourage them to sign up for monthly updates and other notices at www.chrismoise.ca. You can now sign up for our SMS updates as well by texting (647) 424-3257.
Yours in service,
Table of Contents
- Constituency Office Grand Opening
- North St. Lawrence Market Update
- Palm House Construction
- George Street Revitalization
- Corktown Off Leash Area Update
- March Break Programming and Resources
- Programs, Grants and Awards
- Upcoming Community Consultations
- Mayoral By-Election Dates
SAVE THE DATE - Constituency Office Grand Opening
Great news! The Ward 13 team is going to have our very own constituency office at 329 Parliament Street. We will be able to connect with residents in the community and host meetings outside of our City Hall office. I’m excited to meet with residents in our very own ward. We will be hosting a grand opening in the community on April 29th, 2023 at 1:00PM. Save the date in your calendar and join us in celebrating!
North St. Lawrence Market Update
The end is in sight! After substantial delays, the most recent due to COVID-19 impacts on construction, the North St. Lawrence Market is on track to be complete by the end of this year.
Residents may notice that the exterior of the building is mostly complete, with exterior curtain walls and glazing installed. The Jarvis street streetscape has also been completed, leaving mostly internal work to be done. This includes interior partition framing, electrical systems and equipment installations, interior finishes and painting. Work is on track to finish this fall.
Following this work, Market Lane Park will undergo its revitalization, with an estimated completion and reopening of the park in the summer of 2024. These two projects will help revitalize the community, and provide a proper link between the St. Lawrence Hall and South Market. I look forward to seeing both completed!
Palm House Construction
The City is restoring the historic Palm House building at Allan Gardens Conservatory. The improvements will include window glazing, glass cladding replacement and functional modernization of the ventilation and air quality systems and controls. There will also be new barrier free public washroom facilities with improved access from the Conservatory, Park and Playground. Construction began in October last year and is expected to be completed in May 2024. Scaffolding for the exterior heritage restoration was installed in January and installation for the concrete floors commenced in February. Although the Palm house building is closed during construction, the Conservatory remains open and four display houses are open for normal business hours, they can be accessed through two temporary entrances on the west side of the park.
George Street Revitalization
Through partnerships with the Province and Infrastructure Ontario, the City is reinventing the northernmost block of George Street with streetscape improvements and an ambitious new building. Using a rights-based approach, the project aims to provide integrated services for vulnerable people and the broader community. There will be a new 9-storey building replacing the Seaton House men’s shelter with a smaller emergency shelter. It will also include a long term care home, a community hub and offer transitional housing support beds.
The construction duration for the new Seaton House is expected to be between 3 to 4 years. However, the anticipated start date has yet to be determined since the procurement process is still in progress. Stay tuned for more updates on this exciting initiative!
Corktown Off Leash Area Update
Detailed design and rendering of the future Corktown Off Leash Area (OLA) at the western portion of Underpass Park, bound by St. Lawrence Street, Eastern Avenue and the Eastern Avenue Diversion.
Park construction will proceed in two phases, with timelines subject to change. Phase 1 is planned to begin in December of this year, and will include fencing, gates and artificial turf south of the Adelaide Street East overhead ramp. Phase 2, to begin in 2024, will expand the OLA to the rest of the “triangle” after the overpass rehabilitation program is complete. The complete OLA should be complete by 2026.
In addition, following a request from residents, I moved a motion at Toronto and East York Community Council to create an all-way stop at the intersection of Eastern Avenue and Rolling Mills Road, which once installed will provide a safer connection to the OLA for residents and four-legged friends alike!
March Break Programming and Resources
The City offers students and families many free and affordable activities beginning this weekend and throughout March Break. Here are some programs within and around Ward 13, and for more options located across the city see here.
City community centres offer free or low-cost programs for all ages, such as swimming, skating, basketball, volleyball, floor and ball hockey. More information is on the City’s Recreation webpage.
Conservatories and greenhouses
Allan Gardens and Centennial Park conservatories will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. during March Break. Admission is free, and the conservatories are wheelchair accessible. While Allen Gardens is undergoing renovations, washrooms inside the conservatory are closed. Portable washrooms are available outside by the playground. More information is available on the City's Conservatories webpage.
Visit a working farm in the centre of the city. Riverdale Farm is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and admission is free. More information is available on the City's Zoos & Farms webpage.
Many outdoor artificial ice rinks are open throughout March Break, weather permitting. Before heading out, residents are encouraged to check the status of the rink on the City's Drop-in Skating webpage.
All indoor leisure skating programs, including caregiver and tot, family skate and shinny, are free for all ages. Hockey helmets approved by the Canadian Standards Association are mandatory for children under six years of age. Schedules, locations and live rink status updates are available on the City's Drop-in Skating webpage.
Skiing and snowboarding
Earl Bales Ski and Snowboard Centre will offer downhill leisure skiing and snowboarding, as well as lessons during March Break, weather dependent. More information is available on the City's Downhill Skiing and Snowboard Centre webpage.
City pools will offer free leisure swimming during March Break. People can dive in and find all the need-to-know information on the City's Swim webpage.
Toronto Island Park
Just minutes away from downtown by ferry, Toronto Island Park is a great place to walk, cycle, explore and enjoy the city skyline. Information on the ferry schedule, fees and what to know about visiting Toronto Island in the winter is available on the City's Toronto Island Park webpage.
Toronto Public Library
Kids and teens can explore programs, workshops, books and more at a local branch or online during March Break. More information is available on the Toronto Public Library website.
Toronto History Museums
Toronto History Museums offer drop-in activities for the entire family from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on March 11 and 12 and March 15 to 19. Some activities may require pre-registration. More information is available on the Toronto History Museums webpage.
In this hands-on workshop, participants will design and print their own one word poster on the 1845 printing press using vintage wooden type from the Mackenzie House printshop collection. Pre-registration is required, register here.
Toronto Public Health (TPH) provides appointment and walk-in vaccination opportunities for individuals who are yet to be vaccinated or are eligible for a COVID-19 booster dose. Bivalent booster vaccines are available for anyone five years of age and older. Health cards are not required.
All TPH immunization clinics are open Tuesdays through Fridays from noon to 6 p.m. and on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Details are available on the City's COVID-19: City Immunization Clinics webpage.
TPH is also helping Toronto students catch up on lifesaving vaccines they may have missed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Parents and guardians of children from four to 17 years of age can book vaccinations for diphtheria, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, meningococcal disease, pertussis (whooping cough) and varicella (chickenpox) at TPH immunization clinics. Ontario's Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA) requires these nine children's vaccines. Students in grades 7 to 12 can also continue to access vaccines for human papillomavirus, meningococcal and hepatitis B at these clinics. There is no fee for children to receive these vaccines, and a health card is not required.
Appointments are preferred, though walk-ins will be accommodated based on capacity. Appointments can be made online through the TPH appointment booking system.
Mobile clinics continue to offer COVID-19 vaccines for eligible residents ages five and older. Vaccines for children six months and older are also available at select mobile clinics. A health card is not required. Appointments are not necessary to visit a mobile clinic. Book here.
Programs, Grants and Awards
Great news for small businesses-- CafeTO Applications have opened! Local restaurant and bar owners and operators interested in expanding outdoor dining space into curb lanes and sidewalks through the City of Toronto’s CaféTO program can apply for permits online below until Tuesday, March 28 at 11:59 p.m.
The City of Toronto is accepting applications for the Youth Violence Prevention Grant to support the de-escalation of violence in priority Toronto communities. The Grant, which will be open for applications until Tuesday, April 11 at 12:00p.m., will see $2.2 million in total funding allocated to approved local community agencies in priority community zones that have been identified across Toronto.
The Pam McConnell Award for Young Women in Leadership is now accepting applications! The award is open to young Toronto women, between the ages of 16 and 29, who demonstrate exceptional leadership, a commitment to social justice and inspire other young women. Applications are due by April 3, 2023 at 11:45p.m.
Upcoming Community Consultation
There is an upcoming Community Consultation Meeting for a new development in our ward, please see below for more details:
Development Address: 646-664 Yonge Street and 2-4 Irwin Avenue
Date: Thursday, March 16th, 2023
Time: 6:30PM to 8:00PM
Link to register for attendance: Register Here
Mayoral By-Election Dates
The Mayoral By-election Dates have been set, please see below for nomination dates and schedule a day to go vote!
- Nominations will open Monday, April 3 at 8:30 a.m.
- Nominations will close Friday, May 12 at 2 p.m.
- Advance voting will take place Thursday, June 8 to Tuesday, June 13
- By-election will be held Monday, June 26